Artist in Residence 2015, Christine Suarez
But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the LORD deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.”
September 7, 2015
Many interesting things have been revealed since my last post. I have spent most of July and August intensively rehearsing and researching. It has truly been a joy to collaborate with performing artists Carol McDowell and Rebeca Hernandez. It has also been a joy to be the Studio Artist in Residence at 1450 Ocean-Camera Obscura. It is sadly so rare that I’ve had the opportunity to come to a work on a daily basis. It has truly deepened my point of view. Below are photos of the studio and our view!
We are preparing for a performance on August 29. This manifestation of the work I have designed in part as a site-specific piece and in part as a lecture-demonstration. The actual location and construction of the studio has informed this choice. As you can see from the pictures the studio is mostly windows. Everyone that comes into the building sees us in the studio rehearsing. Also there is a path along the other side of the building where curious folks watch us rehearse from the other side. Throughout the piece I am curious about how we see the performers – our vantage point – and how what we are seeing is framed -literally and figuratively. Since our rehearsal process has been basically “transparent” I wanted the piece to display our process. That is why I am viewing the work in part as a lecture-demonstration. I am narrating the piece: telling the audience the story from the Book of Ruth, sharing our rehearsal process, and talking about our interpretation of the story.
We have continued our physical work with the Ruth and Naomi paintings. We have begun to manipulate the material in interesting ways. We have talked at length about how Naomi and Ruth reconfigured what a family looks like and how a woman is supposed to behave. We have been using that idea of reconfiguring in application to our choreographic material. We have also been playing with patterns in space to represent how these two women navigate the cultural structure, which they lived – how they both continued on with their lives together though with great uncertainty. We have also been experimenting with some improvisation structures to embody different aspects of Naomi and Ruth.
More soon! And please if you have any thoughts or responses, I welcome them! Email me at [email protected]
Follow the development of Christine’s project by reading this in addition to her first and second posts as a 2015 Artist in Residence.
All materials are copyrighted by the artist and used here by permission.